Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Posh Schools don't want Welsh curriculum

BBC Wales gleefully report that some fee-paying schools  (What we used to call private schools) in Wales say they will follow the new GCSE courses for England rather than those set in Wales, the BBC has learnt.
Welsh Independent Schools Council (Wisc) (The Welsh just means they are in Wales)  said it believed the Wales-specific courses starting next year "lack credibility and portability".
Wales is setting its own English, Welsh and maths courses as England scraps coursework for most subjects.
The Welsh government said its GCSEs would be credible and rigorous.

Start Quote

It's not about opting for Wales or England, it's a question of what's the best qualification for our pupils”
Kenneth UnderhillChair, Welsh Independent Schools Council
The changes to the examination systems begin being rolled out in September, with the first of the new qualifications being awarded in 2015.
At the moment, two-thirds of these secondary schools sit the Welsh exams.
But the majority say they will now follow the England-based qualifications. According to the BBC Eighteen responded when asked about their plans, and two-thirds said they would be switching away from the Welsh GCSE.
Since in  Wales, there will be new courses in English, Welsh and maths broadly based on the current GCSE structures.
Whilst In England, a new grading system will use numbers instead of letters, and coursework is being scrapped for most subjects.
The changes will be in stages, starting with pupils due to take GCSE exams in 2017 - those turning 13 in the current academic year.
English and maths will be the first subjects to be affected.
Wisc chair Kenneth Underhill told BBC Wales he felt the changes in Wales were being brought in as a "fairly knee-jerk reaction".
Unlike the Michael Gove reforms in England Mr Underhill?
"There are a number of us heads of independent schools who are very patriotic Welshmen," he said.
"But in the end our responsibility is to do the best for our students. And so it's not about opting for Wales or England, it's a question of what's the best qualification for our pupils."
But there must be suspicion that Maths aside these schools do not see themselves as part of Wales and do not want to follow a Welsh curriculum.
And how many currently use it WJEC curriculum at present I wonder?
It would be interesting to see how many pupils come from Wales  or how many see their future in Wales as they go to   University often outside Wales

It seems that these Schools see the future of their Pupils as being outside Wales and that they feel "patriotic Welshmen" or not.
What we seam to have here are schools that see themselves  as islands of English Education in Wales .
Illustrated  when in February this year when Emma Taylor, the first female head teacher of Christ College Brecon in the school’s illustrious 473-year history, provoked controversy by claiming that some students are in need of being “rescued” from Welsh medium schools.
Asked why the education sector is struggling, Mrs Taylor said: 
“There is something in the Welsh psyche which is a desire not to get above yourself. 

“It seems that Welsh people prize modesty and humility and sometimes that can lead to a lack of ambition, and ‘I’ll settle for what I’ve got’ rather than thinking, ‘The world is my oyster and I can really aim high’.
“So there may be something about the teaching of resilience and self-esteem and self-belief areas of education that could be quite important as well as the three Rs.”
Should we care what  represents a very small number of those being educated in Wales.

Well yes because these bigoted  Heads hit the headlines and portray our education of our kids in a bad light based on a view that English education is superior .

We need a debate on Education and Examinations here but it should not be led by people who clearly have no commitment to the vast majority of our pupils here and whose interest lie elsewhere.



  1. Let's face it, there's an underlying anti Welsh racism here. That is, for these private schools, anything Welsh (with exception of rugby) ism by definition inferor to anything English.

  2. The answer's simple then - close these anti Welsh imperialistic dinasours down !!